One of the really nice things about Fender instruments is that you can change the look of your instrument with relative ease.
One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is to replace the pickguard! Fender offers a variety of pickguards with different pickup configurations and materials to help you add a personal touch to your favorite Fender instrument. This 1-Ply, 11 Hole Pickguard, is for 3 single coil pickups.
- American, American Standard, Hot Rod and Deluxe Series Stratocasters, (also Big Apple / Double Fat Strat) (USA)
- Standard, Deluxe and '70s Stratocasters (Mexico)
Just like jazz, there are many different types of blues. From delta blues and Chicago blues to the east coast blues, each one has its own distinctive elements. Over the years, blues guitarists have used a plethora of instruments to accompany themselves, from commonly found acoustic steel string models to resonator guitars, all from a variety of manufacturers. Each type of guitar has its own characteristics, and as you study and learn to play the blues, you will learn to recognize which characteristics you'd like to make use of.
Traditional acoustic guitars produce a sound because of the soundboard, which is basically the wooden face of the instrument. Resonator guitars were originally designed because they were louder than traditional acoustic designs, and they were able to compete with the wind instruments and drums in a large dance band. The instruments feature cone shaped apparatuses (resonators) beneath the strings that are made of metal. Some guitars have one resonator, and others have multiple resonators. Eventually, the instrument found a niche in the genre of blues.
Resonator guitars produce a metallic sound. Often times, the instrument is played with a slide or bottleneck, and it is versatile as a blues guitar, bluegrass guitar, and country guitar as well. There are affordable beginner and professional models of resonator guitars. They will provide you with a variety of tone options that will make your blues sound unique.
Solid Body Electrics
Many guitar manufacturers produce solid body electrics that make great options for aspiring blues guitarists. Most notably, the Gibson Les Paul is one of the most popular instruments. When played at louder levels, this instrument produces that cutting edge blues tone that is desirable from an electric guitar. Similarly, the Fender Stratocaster is a versatile instrument that has settings that can be tailored to fit the sounds of blues and rock and roll. It was used by the legendary Buddy Guy, and Eric Clapton also has made a mark on the Stratocaster with his blues infused tunes.
The first blues musicians were solo acts, singers with just a guitar in their hands. Recordings of Lightning Hopkins and Howlin' Wolf will feature just that - and great acoustic guitar sound. Acoustic guitars were extremely popular in the blues, especially in it early beginnings from the early 1900's to the 1930's, when electrics finally arrived on the music scene. A good acoustic blues guitar would probably feature a more shallow body, constructed from a wood that will produce a bluesy tone, such as mahogany and/or spruce. Gibson makes several impressive acoustics that are designed specifically with the blues in mind, like the Blues King Modern Classic.
The blues has evolved and changed with the time. Start your search for a good blues guitar by first listening to recordings, and determining which style of blues you would like to play. The early versions, with their acoustic guitar accompaniments, may inspire you to pursue a similar instrument and style for yourself. Innovators might lead you to try resonators and electrics. Whatever you choose, let the type of blues your ears gravitate to help you make the decision.
If you are serious about improving your guitar soloing and would like to gain a mastery over guitar scales, then be sure to check out this website: http://www.GuitarScaleMastery.com/letter/fender 40th anniversary stratocaster